OAKVILLE, Ont. – Kaitlyn Weaver and Andrew Poje were at their artistic and athletic best on Saturday as they won the gold medal in ice dancing to conclude the 2018 Autumn Classic International.
The Canadian world championship bronze medallists from Waterloo, Ont., unveiled an emotional new free dance to a piece from the Quebec rock opera Starmania. It was also a tribute to figure skate Denis Ten of Kazakhstan, who skated to the same music last season. Ten was killed this past summer in an incident that shook the figure skating world.
‘’It felt good to get out there and really perform this program,’’ said Poje. ‘’It’s been special for us since the beginning. We just wanted to go out, take it easy and feel the environment.’’
Weaver and Poje earned 197.27 points, Olivia Smart and Adrian Diaz of Spain were second at 171.41 and Carolane Soucisse of Chateauguay, Que., and Shane Firus of North Vancouver were third at 166.24
‘’Everything right now is a work in progress,’’ added Weaver. ‘’We’ve taken our time with it and with more mileage it’s going to get stronger and stronger. This week we’ve felt comfortable on the ice with our programs and that’s a testament to our level of preparation.’’
Soucisse and Firus feel they are on track for a successful season.
‘’We left a couple of points on the table but it was pretty good,’’ said Firus. ‘’The elements were solid so we know we got to work on our technical which will get better as the season progresses.’’
Molly Lanaghan and Dmitre Razgulajevs of Ajax, Ont., were sixth.
‘’We weren’t worried much about the result,’’ said Razgulajevs. ‘’We were out there to do it for ourselves and the crowd. It was incredible to hear the reaction of the audience at the end of the program.’’
In men’s competition, Roman Sadovsky of Vaughan, Ont., was fourth in the short and long programs and his consistency paid off for the bronze medal with a personal best 233.86. It was his first PB in two years.
World and Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan won the gold with 263.65 and Junhwa Cha of South Korea was second at 259.78.
‘’The quad Salchow is my best jump so I was a bit disappointed to miss that,’’ said Sadovsky. ‘’That’s silly points just gone. However I landed my first quad toe, so there was some good, some bad. Although 233 is my highest, there is still so much to go.’’
Bennet Toman of Brampton, Ont., was sixth and Kevin Reynolds of Coquitlam, B.C., eighth.
‘’I want to make the national team this year, that’s my goal,’’ said Toman. ‘’I’ve been working on my performance aspects and I feel my new programs are a big step for me.’’
On Friday, Kirsten Moore-Towers of St. Catharines, Ont., and Michael Marinaro of Sarnia, Ont., won the silver in pairs.
Full information and results: Skate Canada – 2018 Autumn Classic International